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OfficialDrummer

NAMM 2018 Expectations

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Probably won't be a popular one, but the industry eventually catches up with the DIY crowd eventually... acoustic to electric conversion packs, but higher quality.  I'd like to see real cymbals being used, or something that behaves close enough to a real cymbal.  More head/trigger options.  Universal controller/brain/module/DCU compatibility.  I feel like everyone is designing systems that are almost entirely proprietary, or not compatible/upgradable with different software or newer peripherals.  There needs to be more of a standard style/system across the board.

I only suggest that since I've been trying to get a top 40 cover band going.  All those "artists" are using infinite digitally created sound sources.  If you're trying to play an acoustic kit, every song sounds weird. (Too bad Zildjian discontinued... wait... I have a second thing I'd like to see below.)  There's also a need for loops and clicks.  It would be a lot easier if you could buy one unit that has all this integrated into the DCU.

 

Zildjian needs to bring back, and maybe expand, the ReMix line.  Also, integrate that with their Gen16 system.

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The whole electronic thing has gotten crazy. All kinds of new musical instrument inventions on youtube.

I'd like to see a lot more cymbal representation on sound modules. You get a hundred bass drums, etc, and five choices on hats. People say it's because it takes so much time to sample cymbals compared to drums. Or, I should sample my own. Yeah. May as well ask me to work at the controls at NASA.

I thought my back and knees would be worse than what they are today but, a few years back I thought about selling everything and just going with something I wish Alternate Mode/KAT would come up with - a finger unit - their own take on the laptop ZEN drum. I had one 15 years back. Got a refund. Didn't like it at all. No real sensitivity. My own piezo triggers were more sensitive. KAT makes super-sensitive units.

I asked KAT a number of times to think about coming up with a finger drum. The one they ultimately made is not really drum-set footprint. It's percussion oriented.

I'd like to see some company come up with a finger unit, poker chip size triggers, lots of them. I made my own with 48 triggers but, had crosstalk issues. The triggers were too big, as well. Moving my arm 12" to reach an outer layer trigger was more effort than reaching for cymbals with a stick. Lesson learned on that one. A guy at an edrum forum said he made one with poker chips, 16 of them, piezos, and just velcroed them to a cloth. He had used that rig successfully in a pit orchestra at a theater. I just never tried it. Mostly because of the lack of cymbal samples in modules.

Sooner or later I'm going to have to say goodbye to acoustics and just have a really small footprint of an edrum set up. The TrapKat is very light but, I still want something I can sit at like a practice pad and play with fingers. A few dozen triggers. It seems odd ZEN is the only company out there that has gone down that road.

I knew someone would invent invisible drums someday - Aerodrums. I've thought about getting that. Just not really keen on their whole light in your face aspect. Someone will come up with something that doesn't require a light to pick up movements.

As far as acoustics go, I've been modifying and using snare baskets to mount my drums for twenty plus years now. I'd really like to see a company make their own size-appropriate basket system for everything from small to large toms and floor toms, as well.

 

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At this stage of my drumming life, I feel like I really don't care what they come up with, because I am not biting.   I feel like I have all that I need and want.   I think they have pretty much done all they can do to acoustic drums, and I no longer have any use or attraction to e-kits.   

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5 hours ago, Sticks4drums said:

At this stage of my drumming life, I feel like I really don't care what they come up with, because I am not biting.   I feel like I have all that I need and want.   I think they have pretty much done all they can do to acoustic drums, and I no longer have any use or attraction to e-kits.   

I would definitely agree, as far as drums.  I do wonder when some of the big companies will come out with all metal drums: copper, aluminum, brass, steel. Trick does their thing. Ludwig had steel years back. Q makes copper. Beautiful drums. Dunnett makes his titanium. I always wanted to make a full set from sheet steel. Bright and loud. I suppose the expense and lack of interest keeps the companies from doing it. I would have thought DW would have metal kits a long time ago.

Do you think hardware innovations are yet to come?

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2 hours ago, DiehardDIYer said:

I would definitely agree, as far as drums.  I do wonder when some of the big companies will come out with all metal drums: copper, aluminum, brass, steel. Trick does their thing. Ludwig had steel years back. Q makes copper. Beautiful drums. Dunnett makes his titanium. I always wanted to make a full set from sheet steel. Bright and loud. I suppose the expense and lack of interest keeps the companies from doing it. I would have thought DW would have metal kits a long time ago.

Do you think hardware innovations are yet to come?

The only problem with hardware innovations is that every time they improve hardware, Falcon for Mapex, and Star For Tama,  to name a couple, they just justify charging us more.  

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Maybe not going as far as full eDrums, but I've always wondered why putting microphones on a drum set have never become more integrated.  It's always a clunky afterthought that gets in the way.  We should have more options for integrated mics, preferably internally mounted.  Maybe the existing patents are a barrier to entry for competitors right now.  Maybe some drum manufacturers need to co-op with a sound equipment company and find a way to integrate a mic and XLR jack into hardware/holes already present in a typical drum shell.  Maybe they add one more minimally invasive hole.  Cymbals would still be tricky, but that's usually 4 mics (2 overheads, hi-hat, ride) at most anyway, and they're usually out of the way.

Maybe more people using triggers and samples is the answer to getting around this problem.

On 11/30/2017 at 3:37 PM, DiehardDIYer said:

Do you think hardware innovations are yet to come?

I do.  There is a lot of untapped potential here.  As far as I know, Axis is the only company with aluminum hardware.  Composite tubes could be used as well.  That's just for weight reduction.  With some imagination, I'm sure there are lots of potential improvements available.  Drummers just have to be convinced that the new ideas are solid and reliable.

As for hardware on the drums themselves... I've wondered why we're still using stamped or cast steel and brass.  Sometimes that steel is... not really steel.  I know composite material and tooling is expensive, but you could remove a lot of mass from a drum shell with using something like carbon fiber/kevlar lugs and hoops.  That would help with resonance and transport.

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I don't know how expansive the patent wording is for Arbiter drums but, I would like to see a company produce another lugless drum altogether. To me, tuning a drum by spinning the head and providing exact tension all around  the circumference is a brilliant idea. They couldn't quite pull it off successfully but, I imagine someone could. The patent might be very tricky to deal with, though. Drummers were put off by the look (and the price which, logically, should have been very competitive for obvious reasons).

Does anyone remember the company that used lion's heads for lugs? Man, those were incredible looking. They were heavy. Brass, if I recall correctly. If you could make a super strong but light composite lug formed into detailed shapes, you would change the drumming world.

Sticks, you own the Gretsch Motor City drums. Imagine lugs in the form of some classic car for those. Lugs in the form of animals, moving craft/vehicles, drums and cymbals and other musical instruments, anything you can imagine produced in some 3d printing way. 

Some space age composite hardware would be cool. Something that does not produce sympathetic vibrations. Cymbal stands and mounts add aggravating sound to cymbals because of the vibration exponential. Creating hardware with no sound potential would be great. 

At some point, new technologies will add to, if not replace chrome plating, too. Powder coating has been around for a long time but, can chip. There's new stuff developed and used and more on the way. When they bring the cost down below chrome on an industry-wide scale, it will become common.

I met a guy on Bandmix that was able to put some kind of psychedelic rainbow effect on metal. At the time, I was using my rainbow stained kit and thought what a cool look lugs plated that way would be. He said he could do it. I lost touch with him, though.

Peripheries are what can be changed at this point. Aside from isolation mounting, sound hasn't really changed since the inception of modern plywood drums.

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6 hours ago, DiehardDIYer said:

I don't know how expansive the patent wording is for Arbiter drums but, I would like to see a company produce another lugless drum altogether. To me, tuning a drum by spinning the head and providing exact tension all around  the circumference is a brilliant idea. They couldn't quite pull it off successfully but, I imagine someone could. The patent might be very tricky to deal with, though. Drummers were put off by the look (and the price which, logically, should have been very competitive for obvious reasons).

Drum Tech made something that provides even tension.  There's a thread on it here somewhere.  In the videos I watched, you can hear pitch bends here and there.  I think this comes from the small inconsistencies in the heads themselves, and possibly the bearing edges.  Overall, it makes tuning quicker, but you need to have some fine tuning capabilities to make it work perfectly.

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Yes, Drum Tech, Rotek, others have come up with across the circumference tuning.  They work. The Arbiter gig also kept things clean, though. With the newest stuff there's extra hardware, rings, cords, cages, and such. I just loved the idea of seeing the wood grain, or any finish, totally free of clutter and practically speaking, the associated weight. 

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